Gantry and overhead cranes are one of the most popular lifting solutions for various industries across the world and provided by almost all crane rentals. Even though they might look the same, there is a significant difference between the two. We are going to discuss both types in detail to help you pick the best option for your needs.
An overhead crane is exactly what the term suggests. It is a type of crane that consists of runways that run parallel to the bridge connecting the gap. Also, called the bridge crane, the bridge travels with the help of the runways on the sides that move it backward and forward. Plus, it also comes with a hoist that travels along the bridge and moves in three dimensions.
Types Of Overhead Cranes
Types of overhead cranes are: top-running, underhung, and single girder cranes. Each type is different from another in terms of design and purpose. For instance, top-running cranes are meant for lifting heavier weights and can handle greater load capacity.
Meanwhile, underhung cranes come with a bridge that gets support from the bottom flange of the runway beams. These cranes are used at locations with either limited space or low headroom.
And finally, single-girder cranes come with a single bridge girder that controls the hoist. The purpose of this machine is to provide cost-effective lifting solutions.
Advantages Of Overhead Cranes
Overhead cranes are usually installed in industries that deal with the lifting and shifting of extremely heavy loads. In other words, these are mostly permanent installations. The biggest advantage of overhead cranes is that they can lift and shift extremely heavy loads which is not possible with other types.
Furthermore, since overhead cranes are installed or mounted on existing structures, you do not have to compromise your available floor space. And plus, they are installed high up in the air, which means there is little to no interference with the operations being carried out on the floor.
Finally, overhead cranes can be custom-built to meet the needs and preferences of different industries. In most cases, the transportation industry utilizes the heaviest cranes to deal with extremely heavy cargo on a daily basis.
Disadvantages Of Overhead Cranes
While there are some advantages, overhead cranes tend to possess some disadvantages as well. Overhead cranes can be installed on the existing structures but require modifications. These modifications are costly along with the installation itself.
Additionally, overhead cranes can only perform in a limited amount of space. Since these machines do not come with wheels and cannot outrun parallel runways, it could be difficult for them to adapt to the changing needs. So, before choosing overhead cranes, you should also check out gantry cranes.
Gantry cranes are mostly installed in the open and consist of two or more supporting legs that help the gantry lift heavy loads. The supporting legs are fixed on either wheels or rails depending on the type of industry and the loads being lifted. It also comes with a hoist that moves with the gantry for lifting.
Types Of Gantry Cranes
Similar to overhead cranes, gantry cranes come in different forms too. Some of the most common types tend to be full gantry, semi-gantry, portable gantry, and adjustable gantry cranes. Full-gantry cranes are identified by two legs and a rail that offer a stable lifting solution.
On the other hand, semi-gantry cranes have one left running on rails, while the other is supported by an existing structure. Not only does this provide a cost-effective solution but also helps with limited space.
Portable gantry cranes are both mobile and lightweight and are meant for temporary lifting tasks. And finally, adjustable gantry cranes can be customized and equipped with a variety of features and specs to meet the lifting needs of the client.
Advantages Of Gantry Cranes
When compared to overhead cranes, gantry cranes tend to offer better mobility. The reason is that gantry cranes can easily be disassembled and reassembled if required. However, overhead cranes due to having parallel runaways being mounted on existing structures makes it relatively difficult to move around.
In addition to that, gantry cranes can be easily modified to lift heavier loads or cater to different lifting requirements. And most importantly, the installation costs with gantry cranes are comparatively lower than overhead cranes since extensive modifications to the existing structures are not required. So, many people prefer gantry cranes when they visit a crane for rent DC company.
Disadvantages Of Gantry Cranes
The only disadvantage associated with gantry cranes is that they take up quite a bit of floor space due to the supporting legs. This could become a problem for locations that are limited in space.
Comparison: Overhead Cranes vs Gantry Cranes
Overhead cranes are mostly suited to industries dealing with the manufacturing of steel, automobiles, etc. These are heavy-duty machines made for heavy-duty applications. Gantry cranes on the other hand are relatively more versatile and can be used in industries dealing with shipping, construction, and warehousing.
As mentioned earlier, when it comes to costs such as installations, gantry cranes are comparatively cheaper than overhead cranes. However, overhead cranes tend to offer a better return on investment.
Therefore, when it comes to choosing the best option, you need to keep certain factors such as the amount of space available and associated costs in mind.
Mobility And Installation
Overhead cranes are installed on existing structures, which makes them difficult to transfer from one place to another. Meanwhile, gantry cranes are both mobile and easy to disassemble, making them available for different types of lifting tasks.
Safety & Maintenance
Both gantry and overhead cranes require regular maintenance. Heavy machines meant for lifting extremely heavy loads need regular attention to prevent accidents and mishaps. Due to lifting and shifting heavy loads, the hydraulics and other components wear out with time.
Therefore, it is the job of the operator and the management to look after the machine both pre and post-lifting.
Do Gantry and Overhead Cranes Require a Professional to Operate?
Both gantry and overhead cranes are and should only be operated by licensed professionals. In fact, some states have strict laws that overlook such operations. Moreover, the maintenance of the cranes is also crucial. It is not only the company’s duty but also the operators’ duty as well to perform an inspection both pre and post-lifting.
The rules state that the company should record all the maintenance details along with other relevant data and submit it to the regulatory authority.
On top of that, crane operators undergo extensive training and certifications to be able to operate heavy machinery. If not followed, the company can be heavily fined or temporarily shut down as part of the legal proceedings. To avoid fines and shut downs, make sure to hire certified operators for your gantry and overhead cranes.
Both gantry and overhead cranes offer effective and efficient lifting solutions. However, considering the different types along with capability and other features, you need to make sure your needs and preferences are set and defined. This will help you avoid confusion and pick the best option for your lifting needs. Get more details from cranes services VA before renting any crane.